National | Auckland

Illegal oil dumpers could face jail, $300k fine

Three illegal dumpers will appear in court tomorrow for dumping oil drums in Manurewa and the Waitākere Ranges earlier this year.

The Auckland Council is filing 30 charges against them for offences against the Resource Management Act- 22 charges in relation to the dumping incidents and eight for the storage of oil barrels at the home and business addresses of one of the defendants.

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff says laying the charges sends a clear message.

“There are serious consequences for those who dump their commercial waste or domestic rubbish illegally when we get evidence to prosecute them.”

The maximum penalty for oil dumping is two years imprisonment and a fine of up to $300,000 for an individual or $600,000 for a company.

"I was particularly concerned about these dumping incidents because this looked like commercial waste and the oil in the containers dumped was especially damaging to the environment.”

Auckland Council's manager of regulatory compliance Steve Pearce says the seriousness of the incident prompted this response from the council.

"Where offences cause significant effects or the offenders are out to make money by dumping material they have been paid to dispose of properly, we will take enforcement action including prosecution.”

In February, Goff announced significant new resources to tackle illegal dumping including:

  • A 0800 NO DUMP hotline to report dumper
  • Additional enforcement staff
  • Doubling the number of surveillance cameras in hotspot areas
  • Speeding up the process to clean up dumped material in public areas